What E-Commerce trends await us in 2021?


Alex Maistrenko

Alex Maistrenko

Mar 07, 2021 4 min read

Ecommerce mobile application screen for electronics

For a few years, we can watch an increase in e-commerce statistics. More and more people buy online, and the number of purchases from mobile devices is growing rapidly. Even though some people prefer to see and touch real items, other people buy on the internet because it is fast, easy, and can be done 24/7. Internet retailing revenue is predicted to be $ 6.54 trillion by 2022, according to Statista.

Bar chart for a comparison of profit between e-commerce and in-store sales

The pandemic 2020 was a hard year, and many businesses stopped existing. However, at the same time because of lockdowns and no possibility to visit physical stores, the number of online purchases has grown. Shoppers buy food, clothes, gadgets, cosmetics, and other things. Modern technologies help brands to provide personalized experience during shopping, and it attracts and retains customers.

In this article, we will take a look at several trends that have arisen for different reasons. Some of them are popular because of user interest, others appeared as a result of work done by brands to improve the online shopping experience, and others depend on devices used for online shopping.

Mobile Commerce Skyrocketed

A person, who owns a mobile phone, on average spends from 2 to 6 hours daily interacting with the device. We call our friends, post photos, answer emails, order food, play games, and of course do shopping with mobile phones. This caused changes to improve user experience when buying online. For example, the "mobile-first" concept appeared. It means that the priority is on how the product looks when opened in a mobile browser.

Another trend is that e-commerce developed mobile applications that make it easier to access products and purchase them. And one more thing to mention - the possibility to buy from social network platforms with a single tap of the button. All of these things created a new environment and possibilities for nowadays shoppers.

Customer service in real time

The modern generation prefers instant messaging over phone calls or emails. To satisfy this demand chatbots appeared. No more waiting in line until somebody picks up the phone. A chatbot is a type of software that is programmed to give quick replies and help customers improve their shopping experience.

Quite often bots are designed with more features than just answering messages. They can post replies on Facebook, notify about sales or special offers. DevelopsToday has experience in creating such type of software. You can find more information on how we build a chatbot for e-commerce in our case study.

Principle of operation AI chatbot

Buy now pay later

is an alternative payment method to credit cards. The difference is that a user will pay for the goods by parts (or installments) within a specific time. Usually, a special commission is applied and costs an additional 2-8% to the bill. So, let's say you need a hairdryer and its price is $350. With the BNPL system the sum will be divided into five parts, so each month you pay $70 + 4%. To use this type of payment the user has to be authorized for the BNPL agreement.

Automation for growth and productivity

When speaking about automation we mean organizing things without human help. An example of automation can a no-reply email to a customer after an order is registered online or sent to the customer. Automation can be viewed in the context of machine learning and AI technologies. With its help, people can save time for more important things like sales strategy planning or brand extension.

By AI chatbots can learn to give more detailed replies, offer goods to a customer that will have a higher matching rate and higher chances for conversion.


Personalized shopping promises to meet a person’s unique needs. This customized approach leads to higher customer satisfaction rate. At the beginning data should be collected and analyzed to understand better the requirements and desires of the consumer.

Customers want and expect a personalized online experience the same as you hope the waiter at your favorite restaurant to remember your favorite dish. Referring to Google, customers are 40.5% more likely to spend extra if they find the shopping experience highly personalized.

An example of a personalized experience can be recommendations of similar products or complementary goods to the item just put into the cart. Let's say you added a shampoo to your shopping cart, and the shop suggests a hair conditioner that perfectly combines with it. A button 'notify me' when the product is back in stock is another example of improved customer experience. Your customer will not need to check the product page every day and can be sure to receive an email or push notification when their favorite item is available.

Augmented Reality

Some technologies, like augmented reality, may be more costly to implement. However, they create a truly unique experience. With the help of it, a customer can try on clothes without physically putting them on. Such unusual things attract new customers and help to retain different kinds of audiences.


It is impossible to apply all trends to a specific business, and there is no need for it. Start-ups probably do not need automation, while big brands can't live efficiently without it. However, a mobile-first solution can be a very helpful option for some online shops.

To pick up the right tool, you need to evaluate your business needs and perspectives. This way the business will keep up-to-date with customers'  expectations.

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